We’re often asked “What Size Font Should A Resume Be?”
Before you even think about the size of the font you should use in a resume or CV, it’s really important to understand why font size is important for a resume.
You potentially have three audiences reading your documents, all of whom take different things from it, so it has to be compelling, concise and easy to read for each of these audiences.
Your CV should cater for all types of resume readers:
1) High volume / Skim readers (also known as the gatekeeper screeners) such as recruiters who just glance over CVs to check that keywords and selection criteria are addressed;
2) Detailed Readers such as hiring managers and key decision-makers who like to drill down into the finer detail about results, achievements, successes and value adding a candidate brings, and
3) Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), which are the software programs used by around 80% of organisations to assist with recruitment. (Read more about ATS by clicking here or google ATS for more detail). These programs extract information from your documents to determine if you meet the key criteria for a position, and may determine if it even gets read by a human in the first instance.
We advise that you NEVER go smaller than 9 or 10 point (dependent on the font) as we are repeatedly told by hiring managers and recruiters that when they print a document out, they want to be able to read it without squinting over small fonts on documents. As for how large a font should you go? It depends on the font, but as a rule of thumb, no bigger than 12 point.
We’ve spoken to some recruiters who read printed resumes as their last duty of the day, sometimes late at night, so make it as easy as possible for them to read your document by using an easy to read font in a reasonable font size.
Keep in mind that some fonts in one size will be completely different to another font in the same size.
By the way – the fonts below are those we recommend you use in your resume or CV.